Azerbaijan ready to cooperate with Indonesia in energy sector

By Aynur Karimova

Energy-rich Azerbaijan, which enjoys great experience in the oil and gas industry, has expressed readiness to cooperate with Indonesia in this sector.

Energy Minister Natig Aliyev, who addressed an Azerbaijan-Indonesia energy forum in Baku on February 1, said that Baku is keen to share its experience in the energy sector with Jakarta.

Noting that cooperation between Azerbaijan and Indonesia is at a high level, the minister said SOCAR Trading sells third parties’ oil at the refineries of Indonesia for processing.

Aliyev highlighted that oil sector plays an important part in the economies of Azerbaijan and Indonesia.

“Important projects initiated by Azerbaijan are being carried out in order to meet the energy demand not only of the region, but also the European continent,” the minister added.

The minister emphasized that today Azerbaijan fully ensures its energy security.

“The country is absolutely independent in this area,” the minister said. “We even sell energy and the energy carriers to other countries. At the same time, Azerbaijan, thanks to the reforms held, is reducing its dependence on oil, and the country’s economy will develop in the future as well.”

Ronggo Kuncahyo, the Senior Adviser to the Energy and Mineral Resources Minister of Indonesia, invited the Azerbaijani companies to invest in Indonesian energy sector.

He said the two countries can cooperate both in the field of oil production and processing, as well as the production and distribution of electricity.

"Indonesia is located on a large number of islands, which creates difficulties for the electrification of the country and providing the population with electricity. There is also a certain shortage of oil, and we are increasingly using alternative energy. We invite Azerbaijan to invest in these fields, which will further strengthen our cooperation," he stated.

Kuncahyo also revealed a plan to establish a working group on cooperation in the energy field, which will include representatives of companies of the two countries.

Gusti Nyoman Wiratmaja Puja, the Director General for Oil and Gas at Indonesia's Energy and Mineral Resources Ministry, believes that mutual investment in the field of energy, particularly active participation of the private sector, will make a significant contribution to the development of the bilateral relations.

Indonesia is interested in mutual investments in the oil and gas industry together with Azerbaijan, SOCAR's Deputy Vice President for Investments and Marketing Vitaliy Baylarbayov told Trend.

“There are no specific proposals for now, and only interest was expressed, as Indonesia experiences a certain lack of oil and condensate and intends to fill it in both through the ongoing supply of high-quality and environmentally friendlier Azeri Light and the possible increase of volumes by direct participation in Azerbaijani projects,” said Baylarbayov.

He noted that the Azerbaijani side is interested in these opportunities. “There is a certain interest in increasing the supply of Azerbaijani oil and oil products to Indonesia and the investments in infrastructure projects in Indonesia, for example, in the construction or expansion of terminals for storage and transshipment of oil and oil products,” he said.

Indonesia recognized Azerbaijan’s independence on December 28, 1991. Bilateral relations between the two republics were established on September 24, 1992. The embassy of Azerbaijan in Indonesia was established in 2006, while the embassy of Indonesia in Azerbaijan was opened in 2010.

The trade between Azerbaijan and Indonesia is mostly related to the energy sector, as Azerbaijan emerged as the second biggest supplier of crude oil to Indonesia after Saudi Arabia.

The bilateral trade between Azerbaijan and Indonesia reached $101 million in 2007 and increased to $2.5 billion in 2014. The trade balance is heavily in favor to Azerbaijan, as the trade volume mainly dominated by Indonesian imports for Azerbaijan's oil.

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Aynur Karimova is AzerNews’ staff journalist, follow her on Twitter: @Aynur_Karimova

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